NACSW/CNCA JOINT SYMPOSIUM INSTRUCTORS
- PANEL DISCUSSION ON TRAINING DETECTION K9’s
SCOTT BLOM (CNCA President, Retired Law Enforcement)
AMY HEROT (NACSW FOUNDING MEMBER)
MARK TAYLOR (Current Law Enforcement and CNCA Certifying Official)
- JIM BOWERS – Accelerants
After graduating from East Tennessee State University with a degree in Criminal Justice, Jim worked for the Knoxville Police Department and then the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation. While with the TBI, Jim made the largest seizure of cocaine in Tennessee’s history – 1,254 pounds worth $400 million dollars. Jim obtained a Business degree from the University of Tennessee and then began working in the private sector. In 1983, Jim co-founded Integrated Resource Group (IRG), a private investigative company. For 20 years, IRG provided investigative services to law firms and insurance companies, sweepstakes security and oversight, for the NFL, of the Tennessee Titans drug testing programs. Jim trains and deploys accelerant detection canines for insurance investigations and has experience in scent training of other odors. In 2013, Jim became a Senior Investigator with GEICO, responsible for fraud investigations in East Tennessee.
- KEN FURTON, Ph.D. – Science / Chemistry of Scent – KEYNOTE SPEAKER
Kenneth G. Furton was appointed Provost and Executive Vice President of Florida International University on July 2014. He is a leading scholar in forensic chemistry, specializing in scent detection. He served as the dean of the College of Arts and Sciences from 2007 to 2014, where he transformed the university’s largest college into three mission-based interdisciplinary schools to explore and address some of the biggest issues facing society today. During his tenure, the college of Arts and Sciences raised over $41 million in philanthropic gifts and saw its research grants funding increase from $27 million to $60 million annually. In 2014, Dr. Furton chaired the iREAL (integrating Research, Engagement, Assessment and Learning) Commission on the future of FIU and led the committee that created FIU’s 2015-2020 BeyondPossible2020 Strategic Plan.Having started at FIU in 1988 as an assistant professor in chemistry, Dr. Furton in 1997 founded FIU’s International Forensic Research Institute (IFRI), which is globally recognized as one of the premier research and teaching institutes on forensic science. He subsequently served as associate dean of budget, facilities and research and remains director emeritus at IFRI, where he continues to be active, directing the research of graduate and undergraduate students and publishing papers and filing patents.Dr. Furton earned a B.S. in Forensic Science at the University of Central Florida in 1983, a Ph.D. in Analytical Chemistry at Wayne State University in 1986 and completed post-doctoral studies in Nuclear Chemistry at the University of Wales, Swansea, and U.K in 1988. His expertise has led him to serve in numerous local, national and international professional organizations, including the National Academy of Sciences, the National Nuclear Security Administration and the Scientific Working Group on Dog and Orthogonal Detector Guidelines, which he chaired since its inception in 2004. He is currently chair of the Organization for Scientific Area Committees Dog and Sensor working group of the National Commission on Forensic Science.Deeply committed to the academy, Dr. Furton is the author or co-author of more than 800 publications and presentations. His research projects have been continuously funded for more than two decades, totaling more than $13 million in external funding. He has shared his expertise in forensic science through hundreds of invited talks nationally and internationally and has testified as an expert witness in dozens of state and federal trials.
- RANDY HARE – Shaping Behavior
Randy Hare is living his lifelong dream of working with animals and people. Experience and talent in dog training have landed him spots on regional television, in various K-9 Magazine articles, and on national television. In 1987 he appeared on “Late Nite with David Letterman” to perform a complicated trick he had taught his (then) six year old German Shepherd. Randy’s real start, in the late 1970’s, was training hunting dogs. Then, in the early 1980’s he attended a Professional Dog Trainers School where he gained a solid foundation in training dogs for Obedience, Protection, Police Dog Training, and Tracking. By invitation Randy returned to the school as an instructor for one semester, helping train other dog trainers.While Randy continued to further his education into dog training, the school was his first professional experience with training dogs. In 1984 Randy opened his first training center in Monroe, Louisiana where he trained Obedience, Protection, Police Dogs, and Narcotics Detection Dogs. His very first police dog, trained for the Monroe City Marshall’s Office, finished 15th in the nation from a field of 140 dogs at the United States Police Canine Association (USPCA) National Police Dog Trials in Detroit, Michigan. This accomplishment earned him an award from the Ohio Dog Training School, the first award of this kind to be given by the group. Then, after training hundreds of dogs, Randy became interested in police dogs and law enforcement. In police dog training he experienced his work in action : real criminal apprehension, real tracking, real detection work, real handler protection, and, last but not least, real obedience.While still training dogs for private citizens, Randy trained and competed against other handlers and trainers with his personally trained police dogs while also competing successfully in Schutzhund competitions. In his first National Police Dog Trial, Randy finished 7th out of 150 top dogs in that year’s national event held in St. Cloud, Minnesota. This began a 5-year span of over 30 competitions where Randy won or finished in the top percentile in 96% of the competitions: those competitions were Police Dog Trials, Schutzhund Trials, and Narcotics Detection Dog Trials and involved four different self-trained dogs.Randy says he now has a gift for learning from everyone he meets and from every dog he trains.“I went through a period early on when I thought I knew everything. I really grew as a trainer and a person when I faced the fact that you never stop learning and you never know it all. Thanks to a close and dear friend of mine, Walter “Buzzy” Tomlinson, for finally making me understand that. I believe the dogs that I have trained have probably taught me more than I have taught them.”During Randy’s twelve years in Law Enforcement, Randy attended every major seminar (within reach) conducted by world class trainers from the United States and Europe. He learned what each trainer had to offer, combined the best of their styles and techniques with his own, and now shares his training method. Each dog he trains benefits from his experience and knowledge. Few trainers can match his EXPERIENCE, TALENT, and LOVE for training dogs, as shown by his “Recognition and Achievements” through national police k-9 organizations such as the National Police Canine Association and the United States Police Canine Association where he served as a judge for both organizations. Randy is now the proud owner of the Alpha Canine Training Center and the Randy Hare School for Dog Trainers.In 2004 Canine Training Solutions produced a DVD series demonstrating Randy’s innovative and effective “On Target” way to train Detection Canines. This method is being seen as an undeniably more effective method for training dogs and is taking hold throughout the country as well as internationally. Randy has taught the “On Target” method through his School for Detection Trainers through the United States as well as internationally. Graduates of the program include the military organizations as well as federal, state and city law enforcement agencies and other detection canine training
- JACY KELLY – Working Dogs in Ecology and Conservation
Jacy is the owner and lead trainer for Canine Copilots, LLC. Jacy has nearly 20 years of experience working and training dogs. Jacy was a Military Working Dog Handler in the United States Air Force, a Contract Dog Handler for numerous Federal Agencies, and now works primarily with companion dogs.In 2010, Jacy became the first Certified K-9 Nose Work instructor in the Mid-Atlantic region and had classes in both Maryland and Virginia.Jacy has instructed at K-9 Nose Work® Camps, is a Certifying Official for NACSW® official trials and is a judge for these trials as well.
Jacy has assisted other trainers in their pursuit of building and developing their own Nose Work.
- SHEILA McKEE – Search & Rescue
Sheila received her Bachelor of Science in Ecology and Systematic Biology in 1992 from California Polytechnic University in San Luis Obispo, Ca. In 1996 she received her Secondary Level Teaching Credential from University of Redlands and taught 8th grade science for several years. In 1994 she joined the San Bernardino Sheriff’s Department search dog team and certified her first dog, Osa, in Wilderness search. In 1998 Osa became the first Rottweiler to become a Type 1 Disaster Search Dog in the nation. Sheila and Osa were deployed on many searches until Osa’s medical retirement in 2000. Sheila became a Reserve Deputy with the Sheriff’s Department and has served as Commander, Training Officer, and Secretary for the team. Sheila is a Lead Type 1 Evaluator for F.E.M.A. and California O.E.S. and was the Canine Coordinator for Riverside Task Force 6.She also trained a Type 1 Disaster dog, Coby, for her husband, a City of Redlands Firefighter. On September 11, 2001, she and her husband were deployed with Riverside CA Task Force 6 to the World Trade Center disaster. Sheila and her partner Guinness, a yellow Labrador Retriever, worked at the WTC for 11 days. In September 2005, she was deployed again with Riverside CA Task Force 6 for 25 days to Hurricane’s Katrina and Rita. Sheila and Guinness had a very active career with many disaster and wilderness searches, including the local Waterman Canyon mudslide, La Conchita mudslide, Hurricane Ernesto, Forest Falls mudslide and numerous lost person and crime scene cases.In 1997 Sheila began her current business, Mountain View K9 Training, Inc. She trained a few disaster search dogs for civilian handers and her business took off from there. Task Forces began requesting her dogs to add to their teams. She has been very involved in helping to train new dogs and handlers for local sheriff’s department Search Dog Teams. From 2000 – 2002 she worked for a private company handling a drug detection dog daily in schools. That experience increased her ability to handle and train detection dogs of all types. After interning with a Master Detection Dog Trainer, her business expanded to include the training of detection dogs. She has trained dogs in multiple disciplines, including Human Remains Detection, Wilderness Search, and Disaster Search. Dogs that she trained in detection and disaster search work are now working in Florida, Tennessee, Colorado, Utah, Arizona, New Jersey and Nevada as well as California.Sheila is currently a Canine Search Specialist for Nevada Task Force 1, handling both live find and human remains detection dogs for that organization. She has trained every certified dog on that team and continues to help that team expand their capabilities and expertise in disaster and detection work.Mountain View K9 Training recently expanded detection dog training to include Conservation Dogs. These dogs assist in location of endangered species for a private company in Hawaii. Her team recently bred their first litter of working Labrador Retrievers and are raising driven and talented working dogs to be trained in their program. The company continues to expand and explore new opportunities where dogs can use their scenting abilities to benefit society.
- JOE OBERDING – K9 101
Joe has 22 years law enforcement experience. He has been a Police K9 decoy/agitator since 1997, a Police K9 Handler of Detection and Patrol/SWAT based police dogs from 2003 to 2015, and he was the Head Trainer of a 10-dog K9 Unit in Southern Nevada from 2007 to 2015. Joe was recognized as Officer of the Year on two separate occasions, and each award cited his work and efforts within the Police K9 community as a predominant reason for the recognition. He is also a 2-time Medal of Valor recipient. He has been a Certifying Official with CNCA since 2010, a Police K9 Trial Judge since 2009, and a K9 Nosework Trial Judge since 2015.
- KAREN OLER – Bed Bugs / Mold Detection Canines
Karen Oler has always had dogs in her life. In 2000 she embraced the opportunity to focus her career on K-9 training. She started by rehabilitating rescue dogs for a local organization. After receiving training from Karen, these dogs were able to successfully be placed in forever homes. She also trained therapy dogs to visit children at local area hospitals. Karen held the position of manager for a successful and busy boarding facility in La Jolla, CA.Karen became fascinated with K-9 scent detection dogs and the wide range of services they offer. She studied and mastered the skills needed to train and prepare scent detection dog/handler teams to pass the rigorous certification testing process that makes them so effective.In 2004, she founded Certified K-9 Inspections, headquartered in San Diego, CA; a company that provides mold and bed bug scent detection inspections of residential and commercial properties. Karen serves as the company CEO as well as a certified detection K-9 handler. She has become the head trainer of both scent detection K-9s and the dog/handler teams for the company. Through Karen’s hard work, Certified K-9 Inspections has an impressive roster of clientele including pest control companies, hotels and private individuals.In 2006, Karen became an active member of the World Detection Dog Organization (WDDO). Karen served for several years as Vice President of the organization, where she organized educational conferences for the WDDO reaching out to scent detection groups of many different disciplines. She is part of an elite group of K-9 scent detection trainers authorized to train for the WDDO.In 2013, Karen moved to Dickson, TN, just outside of Nashville where she took over dual roles; opening K-9 Scent Detection Services and management of a 200 plus Kennel and Training Facility. Working under the auspices of K-9 Scent Detection Services, Karen is pioneering a new business model focusing on helping others succeed in their dreams of building a K9 scent detection business. Thus, Karen trains and makes available certified Mold and Bed Bug Scent K-9s for other businesses. She consults as an expert in her field showing other scent detection businesses ways to improve their operations, saving their clients time and money.In 2016 Karen began working with Retrieving Independence, a prison program to train diabetic and seizer scent detection dogs. Karen is teaching the inmates on the imprinting process which is how young dogs are taught to lock onto a particular scent.Karen is excited about the future, continually learning about scent detection, dog training, networking with new groups and seeking out new opportunities in the dog world.
- LAURALEA OLIVER – Ecology Detection
Lauralea is a Certified Nose Work Instructor® with NACSW, a NACSW Trial Judge and is the Lead Trainer and Detection Dog Handler for the scent dog detection program at H.T. Harvey & Associates: Ecological Consultants. Lauralea has over twenty years of experience working with dogs in many environments and disciplines including shelters, working dogs and pet dogs. In addition to her ecological detection work with H.T Harvey & Associates, Lauralea owns and operates a professional dog training business K9inSCENTive, LLC which serves the San Fernando Valley and Los Angeles areas. Her business has provided private and group behavior consultations, dog behavior modification, sporting detection training and canine olfaction education since 2004.”
- Dr. CINDY OTT, DVM, PhD – Sports Medicine
Dr. Otto is a tenured associate professor at the University of Pennsylvania, School of Veterinary Medicine in Philadelphia, PA. As a board certified specialist in Veterinary Emergency Medicine she served as an attending clinician in the Penn Vet Emergency Service between 1991 and 2014. During that time she had a special interest in sepsis, trauma and disaster medicine. As a result of her deployment with PA-TF1 (a Federal Urban Search and Rescue Team) to hurricane Floyd and 9/11, she initiated an AKC-CHF funded longitudinal study of search dogs that worked at 9/11 and was inspired to create to the Penn Vet Working Dog Center (www.PennVetWDC.org). Her experience with these amazing canine athletes motivated her to become a board certified specialist in Veterinary Sports Medicine and Rehabilitation (DACVMR-canine) and a Certified Canine Rehabilitation Therapist. She currently serves as the executive director of the Penn Vet Working Dog Center where she oversees the fitness and medical care of the detection dogs in the program and provides rehabilitation and conditioning for police and other working dogs. She has published over 60 peer reviewed articles, numerous book chapters and is an internationally recognized speaker in both emergency medicine and working dog medicine. She was named Pennsylvania’s 2002 “Veterinarian of the Year” and received an Alumni Recognition Award in 2006 and the OSU Distinguished Alumnus Award in 2008 from the Ohio State University. She was a top 20 finalist in AVMF’s America’s Favorite Veterinarian in 2014 and recipient of the Philadelphia Kennel Club’s Dog’s Best Friend Award in 2016.
- MIKE RITLAND – Navy Seal K9 Handler & Trainer
Mike Ritland was born in Waterloo, IA and served 12 years as a US NAVY SEAL in Operation IRAQI Freedom and multiple special forces missions. He served as the Naval Special Warfare Multi Purpose Canine (MPC) Trainer 2011 / 2012. After his service he began Trikos International which specializes in providing private protection K9s to government agencies and high-net-worth Individuals. Trikos International has grown to a global brand and has gained notoriety for its unique training approach and proven success.
Ritland has trained hundreds of working dogs for combat and specializes in private protection dog training, military dog training and police dog training. He has over 18 years experience in importing, breeding, raising, and training multiple breeds of working dogs.
He is the author of three New York Times Best Selling books: Trident K9 Warriors, Navy SEAL Dogs and TEAM Dog.Mike Ritland has provided private protection K9’s for celebrities, private individuals and government agencies:
- Department of Defense (DOD)
- Department of Homeland Security (DHS)
- Transportation Security Administration (TSA)
- U.S.Customs and Border Patrol (CBP)
- Private Individuals
- *Other Government Agencies
He is an active content contributor for numerous journals, blogs and publications such as S.O.F.R.E.P, Men’s Journal, Police K9 Magazine and K9 Cop Magazine. He has been a key-note speaker at Purdue University’s Discovery Lecture Series, Book TV C-SPAN2 Live, H.I.T.S Training Conference and has been interviewed on dozens of media affiliates such as CBS 60-Minutes, ABC, NBC, FOX and PBS.
Mike and Rico (his personal K-9) recently collaborated with the Xbox crew to create the latest iteration of “Call of Duty: Ghosts.” The video game brings lifelike characters and immersive worlds together on a new, next-generation engine. The dog in Call of Duty works together with his team to fulfill missions. The official release was November 5, 2013.
Mike Ritland also founded the Warrior Dog Foundation, a non-profit Special Operations K9 retirement foundation. The Warrior Dog Foundation is dedicated to serving working military K9s, special operations community and their families. With the Foundation’s state of the art kennel facility, these dogs are given the opportunity to live out the rest of their lives with dignity and grace and attended to with compassion to both their mental and physical rehabilitation for the rest of their lives.
Ritland currently resides in Dallas, TX and dedicates his time daily to working with his K9s at Trikos International and the Warrior Dog Foundation. When he is not traveling on business he enjoys spending quality time with each of his dogs, staying fit and perfecting the art of BBQ.
- JEFF SHETLER – Tracking
Jeff is a retired police K-9 handler who worked for the City of Alameda and County of Amador in California and was attached to the FBI’s Hostage Rescue Teams’ K-9 Assistance Program for two years. This program was designed to locate and apprehend high-risk fugitives on the run. Jeff has worked hundreds of trailing cases across the United States and is a specialist in the areas of tactical tracking applications. He is considered the foremost authority on tactical tracking.
He was a certified military trainer, graduating from the prestigious U.S. Army’s Leadership Academy, also known as Drill Sergeant School. He currently trains police officers, military, and search & rescue handlers around the world in the art of K-9 trailing. Jeff raises and trains manhunter K-9s that are working for law enforcement agencies across the USA. They are famous for their human find rates and are much sought after.
Jeff writes for law enforcement & military K-9 magazines, K-9 Cop Magazine and Police K-9 Magazine. He is also the author of these popular books: Red Dog Rising, K9 Trailing: The Straightest Path, Tactical Tracker Teams, and The Tao of Trailing.
Jeff’s scent specific tracking program is currently being taught for police, border patrol, and military groups throughout the USA and these Nato countries: Germany, Switzerland, France, Netherlands, Finland, Estonia, Slovakia, Latvia, Luxembourg, and Poland. This class is specifically designed to identify the qualities of a solid tracking dog and the imprinting stage of training necessary to create a top man-hunter. If you want urban, street appropriate tracking training that escapes the unrealistic uncontaminated fields of traditional sport tracking then this could be your best start possible.